Putting new chicks under broody hen with older chicks

nick1990

Hatching
May 29, 2020
2
0
1
Hi there,

We love our chickens, and currently have about 5 hens and one rooster. One of our hens recently went broody, and ended up hatching three chicks about three weeks ago. We also have 4 new chicks coming in the mail, in about a week. Currently, our mama hen is still caring for her existing chicks. At this point, they are about three weeks old, and she takes them for walks around the yard, etc. They all stick together, which is adorable.

When we get the new chicks, do you think I could slip them under her with the other (older) chicks, when she is sleeping? The existing chicks would be a little over a month old at that point. I am wondering if she would care for them, or if that's a good idea. I am not sure if she is still considered broody at this point. I imagine I would need to keep them in the coop together so she doesn't take the very young chicks out in the yard for a little while. What are your thoughts?

Should we just try to put them under her? Or should we just raise the chicks in the house, and integrate them into the flock at a later point? (if so, how much later?)

I suppose the other risk is that the older chicks may pick on them...

Anyways, here's a pic of the current family, (taken a while ago).
 

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FuzzyCritters

Crowing
Mar 13, 2020
1,979
3,656
291
Kitsap county, WA
No, because of the age difference in the two groups. Day olds have different needs from three week olds, so she can't care for them both. Also, the older ones would get agressive toward the young ones, and even the hen might because they are different from her chicks.
 

nick1990

Hatching
May 29, 2020
2
0
1
No, because of the age difference in the two groups. Day olds have different needs from three week olds, so she can't care for them both. Also, the older ones would get agressive toward the young ones, and even the hen might because they are different from her chicks.
That does make sense...I suppose it would be difficult to care for two groups with such different needs. And we certainly wouldn't want them to pick on the younger ones!
 

Riri13

Hatching
Feb 28, 2021
7
0
3
No, because of the age difference in the two groups. Day olds have different needs from three week olds, so she can't care for them both. Also, the older ones would get agressive toward the young ones, and even the hen might because they are different from her chicks.
What if there is only 1 week between the older and younger chicks?
 

Riri13

Hatching
Feb 28, 2021
7
0
3
That does make sense...I suppose it would be difficult to care for two groups with such different needs. And we certainly wouldn't want them to pick on the younger ones!
What if there is only 1 week difference between the chicks? Thanks
 

Riri13

Hatching
Feb 28, 2021
7
0
3
If they are being raised under a broody, you can't integrate them. The hen will not accept them. If you are brooding them, you can integrate them. The age difference is not too great, just make sure the older chicks don't peck the younger chicks.
Should I put them under the hen at night?
 

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